Economy, Domestic Economy
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Border Couriers Protest Closure of Western Crossings

Border couriers are residents of mainly Kurdish-dominated provinces of West Azarbaijan, Kermanshah and Kurdestan who carry contraband on their backs through mountainous areas to earn their livelihood. Border couriers are residents of mainly Kurdish-dominated provinces of West Azarbaijan, Kermanshah and Kurdestan who carry contraband on their backs through mountainous areas to earn their livelihood.

Shopkeepers of border markets in the Kurdish-dominated provinces of western Iran have not opened their stores for nearly a week to protest against the closure of Iran-Iraq crossings to border couriers.
According to Iran Chamber of Commerce, Industries, Mines and Agriculture, it is not clear which of the two neighboring countries have issued the closure order. 
Earlier in March, the Iranian government announced that the first official cross-border retail market for local traders was launched on the Siran Band-Baneh border in Iran’s western Kurdistan region with the aim of improving the livelihoods of border couriers. 
Based on the plan, details of which are still unclear, border couriers were to receive electronic cards providing them monthly duty discounts on 5 million rials ($119) worth of purchases at the market. With the implementation of this plan, the officials claimed, the proceeds from local marketing will directly benefit the border residents.

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